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Expanding research boutique taps JPMorgan veteran

From a big firm to a small operation

Lazarus Partnership, the expanding equity research boutique launched this year by David Knox, former chief executive at Oriel Securities and head of research at JPMorgan, has added another senior analyst to its ranks.

Edmund Reid, a managing director covering the energy and utilities sector at JPMorgan, who had worked at the bank for over 13 years, departed last month to join Lazarus as a partner, according to sources close to the situation.

Since its establishment this year, Lazarus Partnership has been adding senior analysts from various investment banks and now has 16 staff.

As well as Reid, Chris Ellerton, the former head of banks research at UBS, Steve Keeling, a financial sales specialist, and Hubert Van Den Burgh – both from Oriel Securities – all joined recently. Knox has been successful at poaching from his former employer including Lady Chloe Ponsonby, who was a partner in corporate sales at the firm.

Reid is following the recent trend of senior equity researchers joining or starting boutiques. Andy Howard, former head of Goldman Sachs’ GS SUSTAIN research product, now runs Didas Research, while Marietta Miemietz, former head of pharmaceutical research at SocGen, heads up her own boutique Primavenues.

Meanwhile, Liberum Capital, the small investment bank established in 2007, which now has over 100 staff in the UK, continues to build its research function and hire big names from larger rivals. Late last year, for example, Peter Atherton, a managing director at Citi who had been at the firm for 12 years, joined its equity research team. It’s still hiring at a more junior level for research.

While times have been tough for equity researchers in large investment banks, who have endured smaller pay packets and the seemingly ever-present threat of redundancy, boutiques are hopeful that regulatory intervention will provide more opportunities to compete with the bulge brackets.

Knox left his position at Oriel Securities in February 2013, citing “divergent strategic ambitions”, according to a statement from the firm at the time.

Like many recent research boutiques, Lazarus is hoping to tap into demand for in-depth research from independent sources, something many believe the big banks have pulled away from in recent years. It will not make any recommendations on its research, Knox told Financial News.

“Research, let’s be honest about it, is expensive. The systems are expensive, the people are expensive, there are a lot of companies to cover, there are a lot of firms trying to do it, you need a lot of people to do it properly and it costs a lot of money,” he said.

AUTHORPaul Clarke

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